Allegiant Goes Big: Will Serve Phoenix Sky Harbor

Allegiant has added Phoenix Sky Harbor to its network for the first time. There are two initial routes: Provo and Stockton. While Provo will continue to be served from Mesa Gateway, Stockton will end – for now. The shift to Sky Harbor will be a test, as it was when Allegiant served Orlando International. Will it work?

Allegiant Goes Big: Will Serve Phoenix Sky Harbor
Allegiant is to begin serving Phoenix’s main airport from October. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying.

Allegiant has put on sale Phoenix Sky Harbor to Provo and Stockton, with flights taking off this October. Both routes already operate from Phoenix-Mesa Gateway, the airline’s fourth-largest base. Details of the new routes are as follows.

  • Provo, Utah: Mondays and Fridays from October 8th; one-way from $34
  • Stockton, California: Mondays and Fridays from October 15th; one-way from $38

Stockton and Provo will, of course, be operated as ‘W’ flights. While Stockton will use aircraft based at Las Vegas, Provo will use those from Mesa. On October 15th, for example, crew will leave AZA at 07:30 and arrive back at 15:20

Allegiant Goes Big: Will Serve Phoenix Sky Harbor
Allegiant’s route map from Phoenix, both Mesa Gateway and Sky Harbor, this year. Image: OAG

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Provo to be served from both Phoenix airports

About 48 miles south of Salt Lake City, Provo will continue to be served from Mesa, with 13-weekly departures in the week that it begins from Sky Harbor. Now, Provo will have 15 weekly flights from the Phoenix area, the highest ever.

Allegiant is the only carrier at the Utah airport. It began serving it in 2013 with three routes: Los Angeles; Mesa; and Oakland. The addition of Sky Harbor means eight routes this year together with over 300,000 round-trip seats, analyzing OAG data reveals. This is the most to date.

According to an Allegiant spokeswoman in a conversation with The Arizona Republic, Mesa-Provo is a successful route. This is hardly surprising given the ultra-low-cost carrier (ULCC) will be expanding service at metro level. However, the same cannot be said of Stockton-Mesa.

Allegiant Goes Big: Will Serve Phoenix Sky Harbor
Provo is Allegiant’s thickest route from AZA this year. Photo: Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport.

Stockton will end from Mesa – for now?

Allegiant will (temporarily?) end Stockton-Mesa. The service, which mainly operates twice-weekly, will cease on October 10th, before being launched five days later from Sky Harbor. In early May, Simple Flying showed that Sky Harbor is the US’ seventh-fastest-growing airport this summer out of 455 examined.

The Allegiant spokeswoman said that the shift is a test to see where the route is best served from in terms of performance. If successful, could this mean that other routes might move across? This must be a distinct possibility, or else they would be little point in splitting its operations. This is somewhat reminiscent of what happened in Florida.

Allegiant Goes Big: Will Serve Phoenix Sky Harbor
Allegiant has a 98.4% share of AZA’s seat capacity this year. It is also the only airline at Provo and Stockton. Photo: Allan Wilson via Wikimedia.

Allegiant also served Orlando International

It seems a long time ago, but Allegiant began to serve the main airport for the Orlando area – Orlando International – on February 1st, 2010, with five MD-80s. Some 10 routes eventually moved from well-established Sanford, which remains the ULCC’s largest base. At the time, Robert Ashcroft, then Allegiant’s Vice President of Planning, said:

“Moving these markets from Sanford to Orlando International accomplishes two things for Allegiant.

“First, it allows us to be responsive to the many Orlando travelers who prefer the proximity of Orlando International to the most prominent attractions in the Orlando area, including, most obviously, Walt Disney World.

Second, it improves our position relative to competitors with service to Orlando International.”

Allegiant Goes Big: Will Serve Phoenix Sky Harbor
Provo will now have eight Allegiant routes. Another, Tampa St. Pete, is to begin on October 7th and will operate overnight. Photo: Allegiant Air.

But the move didn’t last

Andrew Levy, who was Allegiant’s President and Chief Financial Officer and is now Avelo’s CEO, was quoted by CAPA as saying, “bookings [for Orlando International] have been well ahead of our expectations“. However, the move didn’t last, ending as it did 14 months later, in April 2011.

What are your views about Allegiant adding Sky Harbor? Let us know in the comments.